With Bank of America in the news for its new debit card fee, and other big banks adding fees left and right, and with free checking beginning to disappear from major financial institutions, consumers are looking for other options. Credit unions are once again receiving attention as those disgruntled with big banks turn to smaller, community financial institutions. But what are credit unions and why re they good for you?
The following was written by my wife, Mrs. Craig. She was kind enough to share her take on our current lifestyle. We changed things up in our household a couple of years ago…I’ll let my wife tell the story.
The last time I wrote a story for this site was almost 3 years ago. Much has happened since then! I wrote a narrative about my decision to take a leave of absence from my job, as a school counselor, to stay home and raise my 1 and half year old son and 8 yr old daughter.
[Glen: here's the article - A Mother’s Struggle Between Work And Kids]
Many events have taken place since I shared that story with you. It was an account of a working mother who became a stay-at-home mom. The story changed as you will see below.
Life as a Stay-at-Home Mom
According to CBS News, approximately 80% of credit reports contain errors. These errors range from minor, such as a misspelling of your name, to an error on your address, to serious such as the same mortgage appearing twice on the report or a loan showing that it is still open when it in fact has been paid off. These latter examples can be enough to deny you future credit, especially if your debt to income ratio is perceived to be too high thanks to the error. I myself found an error on my credit report — a student loan I paid off over 12 years ago still shows as being current.
How do these errors occur? Some may be simple typographical errors, while others occur when a loan is sold to another institution. Regardless of how the errors occur, it is important that you find them and correct them so that your credit report reflects your true credit history. Continue Reading
Occupy Wall Street has become something so un-American yet American all at the same time. Mass demonstrations happen frequently in countries around the world but here in America, not so much.
In America we protest on talk shows, twitter, facebook, and for those “radicals”, letter writing campaigns and maybe a demonstration with a dozen others in front of an abortion clinic or government building.
But 20,000 people with tents and kitchens camped out in a public park in front of the world’s financial capital?
Steve Jobs passed away this week at the age of 56. Whether you loved him, hated him, or fell somewhere in between you must admit Jobs impacted the technology world greatly. Even if you are anti-Apple, competition – good, strong competition – is healthy for an industry. It forces companies to stay on their toes and constantly innovate. Let’s hope Apple continues to do that.
As you ponder the impact of Jobs’ life on what you’re doing right now, check out these great articles:
While I was in my senior year of High School I was required to take economics. In this class as part of our curriculum we did two interesting things:
1) We split into teams and competed against each other in computer simulations based on business. We had to figure out the price as well as budget for R&D, advertising, etc… It was a little like the old Lemonade Stand game (which I mastered in elementary school), if you remember that, but obviously more complex. We then wrote a collective group paper detailing what worked for our group and why based on economic principles.
2) We also had our own class-based business for the term. Our class product was little graduation stuffed animals (it was our senior year after all). We all invested a small amount and put the product together and sold it to classmates and family. Continue Reading
You aren’t a Bank of America customer and your bank doesn’t charge debit card fees so you can stop reading now, right? Not so fast. Everyone needs to know about the new Bank of America debit card fee because it may very well affect your account.
In order to make up for the new credit card regulations that cap the amount of fees a bank can collect from a merchant, Bank of America is charging a $5 fee to customers if they use their debit card to make purchases at a retailer but there’s more to it than that. Let’s take a look… Continue Reading
People often debate the merits of one credit care versus another, as though certain cards have what even seems like a virtue at first glance! But is that really true? Credit cards are something of a financial iceberg—the part you can see looks almost benign—and sometimes even pleasant–but the part you don’t see is where most of the costs are hiding. And those hidden costs are buried in places we don’t often look.
Let’s take a look at the hidden cost of credit cards:
I woke up at the crack of dawn, if you can call stumbling out of bed, cursing the alarm waking up. Strike that, it was about an hour before dawn. At best I had four hours of sleep. I had an hour to get up, shower, and finish putting my stuff together before I hopped a cab to catch my flight to the inaugural Financial Blogger Conference. Sleep be damned, I was excited!
With complete coincidence, this article is publishing on what is my fourth anniversary, blogging with Free From Broke. Four years is like, I don’t know what that’s like in blog years! There was no iPhone or iPad when I started, that’s one thing.
One of the lessons many learned from the recent economic troubles is that almost no one is indispensable. You never know when your job could be on the chopping block. You can, however, decrease the chance that you will be the one laid off when these decisions are made. The key is showing that you are valuable — and possibly indispensable.